Public Education Prior to 1877 Essay

1348 WordsSep 29, 20136 Pages
This controversial issue paper will give you some insights on the past of our vast system of public education. Public education in the 1800’s went from non-existent to a broad system incorporating rich, poor, African Americans, and women. I will be discussing how Thomas Jefferson brought to the attention to the people of how public education will help shape society for a better future. How Benjamin rush states that Christianity and the bible should be incorporated in the school system to help create obedient children, and how women need to have more access to education. I will speak of the common school system and its structures, and how during the reconstruction era accomplished many positives in education. After the revolution certain patriot leaders were concerned about the future citizens of America. They were worried that they would not establish good character and not have the ability to sacrifice self for the greater good of the public. They felt that a good education was essential for a government based on public will , and that we would not turn into fixed class structure like Europe.1 At this time education took place in private paid schools were the parents were involved in keeping the school going not publicly funded, private academies, charity schools or at home. Thomas Jefferson proposed a bill in the “ Notes on the stage of Virginia” in 1784. This bill proposed a structure to a education free to all. It stated that each county should have its own district within a 5-6 mile radius. And within that district there be an established school for reading, writing, and arithmetic. Additional schools would be put in place to teach other subjects such as grammar, geography and higher arithmetic. It instilled the focus that the more talented you were the more free higher education you would get. He also spoke of how there needed to be a library and

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